10 killed, 5 missing in blast at gas plant

BEIJING — An explosion at a gas plant in central China has killed at least 10 people and seriously injured others, authorities said Saturday. Five people were missing. The explosion on Friday evening, in the city of Yima in Henan province, sent a ball of fire and thick plumes of smoke into the air, according to local state media. The fire charred the factory building, leaving only the frame, the accounts said. As the fire spread, nearby houses collapsed, and windows were shattered as far as 2 miles away, residents said. The explosion occurred in the air separation unit of a factory owned by the Henan Coal Gas (Group) Co., according to Xinhua, the state-run news agency. No explanation was given for the explosion. (New York Times)



British Airways halts Cairo flights

LONDON — British Airways abruptly canceled all flights to Cairo on Saturday for what it described as security reasons, a day after the British government warned against traveling to some parts of Egypt. The airline told passengers at their departure gate in London that they could not fly. “We constantly review our security arrangements at all our airports around the world,” the airline said in a statement, “and have suspended flights to Cairo for seven days as a precaution to allow for further assessment.” British Airways did not describe the security issue. The British government released new travel advice for Egypt on Friday, warning against trips to most of the Sinai Peninsula and the area west of the Nile Valley and saying that travelers to Cairo should be cautious, too. “There’s a heightened risk of terrorism against aviation,” the government said. (New York Times)


Funeral held for mass killing victims

PRIJEDOR — Several thousand people attended a funeral service in Bosnia on Saturday for 86 Muslims who were slain by Serbs in one of the worst atrocities of the country’s 1992-95 war. Relatives of the victims, religious leaders, and others gathered at a soccer stadium near the eastern town of Prijedor, standing solemnly behind lines of coffins draped with green cloths. The victims ranged in age from 19 to 61. They were among some 200 Bosnian Muslims and Croats from Prijedor who were massacred in August 1992 on a cliff on Mt. Vlasic known as Koricanske Stijene. The victims were shot and killed by the edge of the cliff, their bodies falling into the abyss. The Serbs later threw bombs onto the bodies, which made identifying the victims difficult. The United Nations war crimes tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia sentenced several ex-Bosnian Serb policemen for separating civilians from a convoy of people being deported from Prijedor and killing them. (AP)